Vitiligo and Pregnancy

 

Vitiligo is a skin disease, which results in white patches over large areas of the body. These are due to depigmentation. Vitiligo is caused when the body stops producing melanin in the skin. The exact reason why the body stop producing melanin is not know, but several theories exist.

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Genetics may play a role, as Vitiligo is occasionally seen in more than one family member. Some medical professionals believe there is an immune system disorder that causes the skin to stop melanin production. Victims of Vitiligo have reported trigger incidents of stress and sunburn prior to onset of symptoms. Other than the white patches of skin, there are no other physical symptoms of Vitiligo.  While we do see Vitiligo in more than one family member about 20% of the time, about 80% of patients report no other family members with Vitiligo.

Many believe that Vitiligo is a type of autoimmune disorder, in which the body’s immune system sees the pigment cells in the skin as foreign bodies, and attacks them. The basis for this autoimmune disorder is believed by many to be genetic.

Since Vitiligo is considered hereditary it is only natural that people who want to have children are concerned about Vitiligo and pregnancy. Children of Vitiligo affected parents are more likely to develop the skin disorder. However, most children will not get the skin disorder even if a parent has it. Also most people with Vitiligo do not have a family history of the disorder.

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Large number of inherited disorders is associated with Vitiligo. They include: albinism of the ocular type, autoimmune polyendocrinopathy syndrome, congenital deafness with Vitiligo and achalasia, dyschromatosis symmetrica hereditaria.

Also women with Vitiligo have questions about whether or not they should take their Vitiligo treatment while pregnant. It is said that there can be some medicines which are used for the treatment of Vitilogo can pass through the placenta and to the foetus, so it’s a matter of concern. These medicines should be stopped after consulting a doctor, as they can pose a severe risk to the baby. Pregnant women should consult both their dermatologist and obstetrician regarding this matter.

 

Strong topical creams should also be avoided, specially while breastfeeding. Since this disease differs from person to person in severity and also the type of patches, there can be no general recommendation. Every patient should take the concerns and questions to their doctors, and chart out a plan which is most suitable to them.

 

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11 Replies to “Vitiligo and Pregnancy”

  1. sir,
    i am suffering from vitiligo since 15 years. i have tried varieties of medicines like homeopathy,aleopathy and ayurveda medicines but could not recover. now i am preganant and is afraid that my child too will also be effected by the disease so kindly suggest me some precautions to recover from this.
    Thank You,
    with regards,
    Rosaleen

    1. Hi, Rosaleen..

      There is no certainty whether your child will also have vitiligo. Since it is considered hereditary, there is a chance that your child can also have it; but then, there is also a chance that he/she may not have it. Sadly, there are no precautionary measures that you can do to prevent your child from having vitiligo.

      What you can do is to be more careful in using medications to treat your vitiligo now that you are pregnant. Some medications can affect the fetus, and may do harm to them. Before trying another form of treatment, including phototherapy, please consult with your doctor.

      Thanks and take care.. 🙂

  2. Hello,

    I’m pregnant in 8th months and i also have vitiligo since i was 3 years old (now I’m 31st). However i learn to live with this… My concern is what type of birth would you recomand me to choose c-section or natural? Because my vitiligo responds to stress… It expanses when I’m is stressful situation.
    Do you think i should consider C-section ? Or taking an epidural for a natural delivery?

    Many thanks!
    Oana.

    1. Hi, Oana..

      To be honest, both methods of delivery can be stressful, so we cannot say that one way of giving birth is better than the other with regard to your vitiligo. Some women are more comfortable giving birth through C-section, while others prefer natural delivery. It is best to discuss this with your OB-GYNE. I guess choosing the method of delivery that you think you will be more comfortable with is the better option for you.

      Good luck! 🙂

  3. Hi,

    I have vitiligo for almost 23 years. I am 36 now. I am married and have a 5 years old daughter. But now I and my husband are worried that I might have passed on the disorder to our child. Though she is normal so far(thanks to God)……

    Now we want to have one more child but are worried and not willing to take any risk. Is there any other alternative method. I even thought about trying surrogacy. I got so many doubts about this pls let know who would be the best person to talk to about my situation……….

    1. This is the same situation I’m also facing..I have a 5 years old daughter and planning to have another kid..
      I just want to u whether u had yr second kid or not?? And he or she is fine or not??

  4. hello sir…

    I am suffering from vitiligo since 18 years. i have tried all kind of medicines..obviously my vitiligo is in control during treatments..now a days 30th is going..now we are planning for baby..but i am afraid ..as per my remark during pregnancy vitiligo is increase …so i want suggestions from you how to stop spreading of white patches during pregnancy..Is thear way to stop it?

    Thank You,
    with regards,

  5. Hi I’m having vitiligo since 20 years…And it’s almost under control just a couple of small spots since I had been having homeopathic since these 20 years..I’m 29 and now I’m pregnant..I’m still taking homeopathy..Is it possible that this will affect the child in any way… Really tensed…Please let me know…

  6. I got this disease back in 1976. I was 14 years old.
    It wasn’t till 19 years old I saw a doctor about it.
    When I found out you could pass it on to your offspring is when I made an oath never to have children.
    I’m doing my part to eradicate this awful condition.
    How bout’ you???????????

  7. Hi,

    I am wondering if there is genetic testing for fetuses that can look for the genetic mutations that could cause vitiligo?

  8. Hello sir, i m 25year old and the vitiligo stared spreading over my body parts,can pregnancy help me to activate my autoimmune disorder and can i get my skin pigment (melanim) normal.

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